This is my last post before we start the new year. Not entirely sure what I'm posting next year, but I think it's time to get back to some hard core writing stuff.
Also, there will be a blog every week for readers. Writing blog will still post on Mondays, but the reader blog will post on Tuesday...which means you may have to scroll down to get to the writer post if you come to the site after Monday. :) But I'll remind you.
And now for the last blog of 2013...
In the finale for Dancing with the Stars, we heard the eliminated couples express their gratitude for the opportunity to have been part of the show. They hadn't merely learned how to dance (or how difficult dancing is); they'd fallen in love with their competitors -- made friends with the very people who wanted the trophy as much as they did. They'd tested their abilities. Each had had successes and failures, and to a person they spoke of how those failures had taught them lessons.
They'd made a few bucks. They'd gotten some publicity. But those things faded when it came time to really evaluate their experiences. What they would really remember was that they'd had a good time, reset their limits and discovered a new part of themselves.
Isn't that what we do when we write? Okay, granted, nobody likes making the money more than I do because I still have a mortgage. But I've also been writing a long time. If I didn't enjoy it, it would have driven me insane long ago.
Publishing isn't a sprint. It's a journey. Like those dancers on Dancing with the Stars, you should be enjoying it. You should be pushing yourself. You should be learning new things about yourself...and you should be noting the pronoun you that keeps turning up in what I'm saying.
You can't compare yourself to anyone else. You are running your own race. If you do it right, you'll have enough success. You'll make a little money. You'll get some publicity. But you'll also get the wonderful satisfaction from growing and becoming the best YOU you can be.
As long as we're writing ALL of us are successful. Not in the weird, everybody gets a ribbon for competing kind of way. But in the good way. In the way that says, if you're still in the game, you're still in the game. Your biggest success, your greatest novel, might be just around the corner.
So compete with yourself. Be honest. Study when you need to. Hold yourself back when you're not ready. Push yourself out front when you are. And enjoy it. In this month of December when we typically begin thinking about New Years Resolutions...maybe this year count your blessings, count your achievements...and be proud of yourself.
You've come a long way, baby. :)
Happy Reading ... and Happy New Year!